Last July's issue of The Celator contains an editorial from Kerry Wetterstrom. Kerry has decided he can no longer accept articles that reference Wikipedia.
Kerry won't accept articles citing Wikipedia because 1) “trolls” are creating deliberate falsehoods in it, 2) Universities are banning the site and 3) An excellent Celator submission had errors in rulers dates and the source was Wikipedia.
I was working on a long rant against Kerry's policy, but instead of posting it I went to Wikipedia and updated the entry for Polyxenios and pointed out a problem with a Bopearachchi citation on the discussion page for Menander I.
I wish Kerry's editorial told us the names of the rulers with incorrect dates. I am currently interested in Polyxenios, but it probably wasn't him! Kerry's advice for getting information that is good enough for The Celator is to “... visit your local library, as they usually have the basic historical references.”
The only (modern) book I have that mentions Polyxenios is Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum: American Numismatic Society, part 9, Graeco-Bactrian and Indo-Greek Coins (1998) which places him circa 100 BC, presumably based merely on his coin sharing monograms with slighly less dubious Baktrian dynasts. Bopearachchi doesn't mention that R.C. Senior disagrees with him. I don't have Senior's books and don't know if he says why he disagrees with Bopearachchi.
Errors in regnal dates don't bother me. A good article on Polyxenious' coinage would still be good if the author followed Mr. Bopearachchi, Mr. Senior, or reported the disagreement when dating the coins. Kerry should re-consider. However, authors should also consider that citing Wikipedia makes them look kinda dumb. It is better to obtain the books and articles cited in the ===References=== section of the Wikipedia article and see what the experts actually said!
Changes to the library - The reason I started this blog was to advertise the wonderful resource that is the BNS / RNS library as there are changes afoot. I have just been advised ...
2 weeks ago